The Filling of the Holy Spirit: Old Testament and New Testament
In a recent Thursday question and answer, Bob asked:
When David was anointed with oil to be King and filled with the Holy Spirit, was his filling of the Holy Spirit the same as one becoming a Christian?
Bob, my answer to that question would be “yes” and “no.”
- The Holy Spirit is the same – He doesn’t change through the ages or the covenants.
- God’s way of salvation is the same – it isn’t that people were saved by works or keeping the law in the Old Testament, and they are saved by the work of Jesus and by grace in the New Testament. Everyone who has ever been saved has been saved by Jesus and by His grace!
Yet, there is a difference in the experience of God’s salvation between the Old and the New Testament.
- In the New Testament, we are saved by the work of Jesus at the cross and the empty tomb – looking back to that completed work of Jesus.
- In the Old Testament, people were saved by the work of Jesus at the cross and the empty tomb – looking forward, anticipating, the completed work of Jesus. For Old Testament believers, the work had not yet actually been completed.
- In the New Testament, we are saved and we live under the New Covenant – something not true of those who lived before the New Covenant was instituted.
The New Covenant was promised in the Hebrew Scriptures (the Old Testament) but it had a definite starting point. Jesus said in Luke 22:20 at the last supper, This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you. The work of Jesus at the cross and at the empty tomb (His death and resurrection) put the New Covenant in action, in force. There was a time when the New Covenant was promised, but not in effect – then, after what Jesus did in His death and resurrection, the New Covenant was in effect.
What does this have to do with the Holy Spirit?
The outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon all God’s people is promised under the New Covenant.
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.
I will put My Spirit within you: Another aspect of the new covenant is the promise of the indwelling Holy Spirit. Under the new covenant, the Spirit dwells in every believer (Romans 8:9), and is promised to fill the believer with special presence and power (Acts 1:5 and 1:8).
So, the Holy Spirit was definitely given under the New Covenant. In Bob’s question, he mentioned King David:
When David was anointed with oil to be King and filled with the Holy Spirit, was his filling of the Holy Spirit the same as one becoming a Christian?
The Holy Spirit definitely came upon people in the Old Testament, under the Old Covenant – but only certain people, at certain times, usually for a special purpose. So, a prophet was anointed. A priest was anointed. A king was anointed. They were anointed as special people for a special purpose. Under the New Covenant – in effect because of the person and work of Jesus Christ, our prophet, priest, and king – we’re all special!
It is true that there were some anointed with the Holy Spirit under the Old Covenant who were not prophets, priests, or kings – like the artisans of the tabernacle that were specially gifted by the Holy Spirit for their work. But again, these were special cases. There was not a general outpouring of the Holy Spirit that we see under the New Covenant.
That was the whole point of Peter’s quoting of Joel 2 in his sermon the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2. He pointed out that they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, in fulfillment of Joel’s New Covenant promises that even the servants and old people would be filled with God’s Spirit.
Also, the work of the Holy Spirit as described for believers under the New Covenant is far more glorious. Under the New Covenant (this list with Scripture references will go in the notes):
- All believers are indwelt by the Holy Spirit (John 14:17, Romans 8:9)
- Their body is a temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19; 3:16)
- The believer can be continually filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18)
- The fruit of the Holy Spirit will be on display (Galatians 5:22-23)
- The measure of God’s giving of the Holy Spirit is abundant (Titus 3:6)
- In the believer’s life there is an outflow of the Holy Spirit as well as an inflow (John 7:38-39)
- The Holy Spirit is always present among true Christians (John 14:16)
- The Holy Spirit guides the believer into truth, glorifying Jesus (John 16:7-11)
- The Holy Spirit teaches the believer (1 Corinthians 2:9-13)
- The Holy Spirit reminds the believer of the Word of God (John 14:26)
- The Holy Spirit is a witness to our relationship with God (Romans 8:16; Galatians 4:6)
- The Holy Spirit is a witness to our adoption as sons and daughters of God (Romans 8:15)
- The Holy Spirit is an abiding helper and advocate (John 14:16)
- The Holy Spirit is a helper in prayer (Romans 8:26-27)
- The Holy Spirit gives guidance (Romans 8:14; Acts 13:2-4)
- The Holy Spirit washes and regenerates the believer (Titus 3:5)
- The Holy Spirit strengthens the believer (Ephesians 3:16)
- The Holy Spirit gives power to be a witness (Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 2:1-5)
- The Holy Spirit gives supernatural gifts to individuals for the health and growth of the entire church (1 Corinthians 12:7-11)
So, to answer Bob’s question:
Yes, there are some profound and important ways in which the giving of the Holy Spirit is both broader in scope, and greater, more glorious in the New Covenant.
What is the difference between being filled with the Holy Spirit and being baptized in the Holy Spirit?
I don’t know if we can make a hard and fast difference. Jesus spoke about these two different aspects of a person’s experience with the Holy Spirit: being baptized with the Holy Spirit and being filled with the Holy Spirit. Here’s the question: Is the baptism of the Holy Spirit a once-and-for-all experience in the Christian life? Some people would insist that it is, because Paul in his letter to the Corinthians says that there is “one baptism.” However, I don’t necessarily think that Paul was referring to the baptism of the Holy Spirit in that passage. I think that context demands that he’s referring to the baptism that we would experience by water. Nevertheless, I think it’s worthy to debate.
It’s not entirely clear whether or not the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a one-time event, or if it’s an ongoing event in a Christian’s life. This is what we do know: The Bible describes the filling of the Holy Spirit in Ephesians 5:18, where Paul writes, “Be filled with the Holy Spirit.” In the grammar of the original language in which Paul wrote, the sense of that phrase is to be constantly being filled. Therefore, we know that the filling of the Holy Spirit is to be an ongoing experience. To be straightforward: I don’t think there’s a lot of difference between the baptism the Holy Spirit and the filling of the Holy Spirit. I think that the same experience can be comprehended under both terms.
Now, I could go to the Scriptures and try to make some fine distinctions. There’s a place for that. Sometimes it’s worthy to understand the Bible in its smallest detail. But in general, when I’m talking to somebody about the work of the Holy Spirit in their life, sometimes people are really hung up on the phrase, “The baptism of the Holy Spirit.” If that’s the case, then refer to my preceding answer about being filled with the Holy Spirit.
Something I like about the phrase, “baptism of the Holy Spirit,” is that it refers to something concerning the work which the Holy Spirit wants to do in our lives. To be baptized into something is to be immersed in that thing. That’s what the ancient Greek word baptizo simply means: to be overwhelmed, to be covered over, to be immersed in something. That is the kind of relationship that God wants us to have with His Holy Spirit.
If I could be so forward, it does not mean a sprinkling of the Holy Spirit here and there, though sometimes the Holy Spirit’s work is talked about in that way. But Jesus definitely promised a baptism in the Holy Spirit for His people. They would be immersed, overflowed with the Holy Spirit. So, there’s nothing wrong with talking about either the baptism of the Holy Spirit or the filling of the Holy Spirit, but I believe that the work of the Holy Spirit can essentially be comprehended by either term.
Do people need to speak in tongues in order to be filled with the Holy Spirit?
This is an important issue. The idea is that some churches expect people to prove that they are filled with the Holy Spirit, or baptized in the Holy Spirit, by speaking in tongues. That is not correct, biblically. I believe it is a dangerous misunderstanding of the Bible to say that speaking in tongues is the evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The belief that the evidence of being filled or baptized with Holy Spirit is the speaking in tongues is a classic, but not universal, Pentecostal theology. I believe that it is a dangerous teaching.
First of all, let me explain to you why I do not believe that it’s true, although I don’t think people are crazy for following that line. I think it’s incorrect and even dangerous, but it’s not crazy. On at least two occasions in the book of Acts, speaking in tongues was the evidence of being filled or baptized with the Holy Spirit. We find that when the disciples came to Ephesus, we find that on the day of Pentecost; so, on two or three occasions in the book of Acts, speaking in tongues was the evidence. But when you take a look at what the New Testament says in its entirety, I think it’s wrong to say that it is the evidence. Most pointedly, Paul insisted that not all believers speak in tongues. He just said that in his teaching on the gift of tongues in 1 Corinthians 12; later on, he emphasized the same idea in 1 Corinthians 14.
All believers must have the Holy Spirit, at least in some measure. I believe that a believer can open themselves to greater and deeper experiences with Holy Spirit, but every believer has the Holy Spirit. If you don’t have the Holy Spirit at all, you’re not a believer at all. If someone doesn’t have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Him. The idea that you could prove that you’re filled with the Holy Spirit by speaking in tongues is not only wrong; I think it’s really misguided, and dangerously so because it makes people seek and even fake the gift of tongues, in order to prove to either themselves, the pastor, or the people of the church, that they really are filled with the Holy Spirit.
Friend, we should not seek the gift of tongues as a merit badge, as something to prove that God really approves of us, and that we really are filled with the Holy Spirit. I believe the New Testament teaches that the gift of tongues is a precious gift which God gives to His people. But it’s a gift of communication between the individual and God. It’s given to communicate from the individual to God, on a vertical level between the believer and God, not on a horizontal level. The gift of tongues is not given to prove anything, either to myself or to the people around me. When it is sought for that purpose, it always twists things. It always makes things strange. God doesn’t want His gifts, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, to be a strange and weird thing.
The churches that teach such a doctrine are teaching something that I don’t think is biblical, and I think it does damage. It does damage because it makes people seek the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Holy Spirit in a way that is works-based, and in a way that encourages people to fake the legitimate gifts of the Holy Spirit.
I recently uploaded an extended teaching video to my YouTube channel. It’s on the gift of tongues and its relation to edification. Check that out for a more extensive answer about how the gift of tongues works among believers, both individually and in God’s family today.
Does Satan hear our prayers when we pray out loud? Should we pray silently?
That’s a good question. It prompts a further question: Can Satan read our minds? The Bible doesn’t specifically tell us. The Bible gives us principles which help us answer the question, but I don’t think it tells us specifically, “Satan can read your mind.” Satan can’t read your mind.
Can Satan read our thoughts? We could answer both yes and no. First, I would say Satan cannot read our thoughts, because he’s not omniscient. Satan is not God. There are people who pump up Satan to have godlike attributes which he does not have. People tend to fall into two extremes on this issue. Sometimes people want to give Satan more power and more credit than he properly has, and other times people want to give Satan less power and less credit than he should properly have. We don’t want to fall into either extreme.
Please understand that Satan is not omniscient like God is. Satan does not know everything. And because he’s not omniscient, because he’s a created being, I don’t believe that he can actually read my thoughts. I believe that Satan has agents: a vast army of unclean spirits, angelic beings that are fallen, who have joined Satan in his rebellion against God. They are not Satan himself, but they’re his agents. Satan and his agents are brilliant observers of human character and human actions. Therefore, while I do not believe that Satan or his agents can actually read my mind, I believe that they can reliably know what I’m thinking, or at least guess what I’m thinking.
I heard a pastor put it like this once. He said, “If my wife can read my mind, so can Satan.” Now, we know that our wives or spouses or people who are close to us can’t actually see or hear the thoughts inside of our head, but they live with us, and study us. They know us well enough to often be able to accurately predict what we’re thinking. In that sense, I think that the devil or his agents can sometimes can “read our mind.”
Does Satan hear our prayers? Certainly, the devil or his agents can hear us when we speak. Can they read our thoughts? They can make fairly accurate guesses in many circumstances, not always as to what we’re thinking. Now your question is, “Should we pray silently?”
There is no need for us to pray silently, out of fear that Satan will hear our prayers. Pray — and don’t care if Satan can hear you. You are praying to the living God and He is so much greater than any power of darkness. Pray to the living God, full of faith and full of confidence. Don’t worry about what Satan may or may not overhear. If we care too much about what we think Satan can or can’t hear, or what he can know or do, it can lead us into suspicion and superstition.
Let’s just be bold, live our life before God, and not worry about what Satan can and can’t do. There’s nothing wrong with praying silently, when we must do so out of necessity. But in general, I think it’s important for us to pray out loud. I think praying out loud makes our prayers better, and more focused. God tells us to do this. There’s a wonderful phrase in the Minor Prophets where it says this, “Bring words with you when you come and appear before God.” Bring words, not just thoughts, but words. God wants to hear our words in prayer.
Now, can God read our thought prayers? Yes, of course He can. But there’s something good for us in praying with our voice. Let me give one other encouragement to you. When we read our Bibles, I think more of us should read them out loud. Now, I’m not trying to make a law for you. I’m just saying that it will benefit you more than you think, to actually hear yourself read the Word of God. It’s great to use an audio Bible, if you want to do that, but there’s something thrilling about reading the Bible out loud, and hearing yourself read the Bible. Did you know that in the ancient world, that’s always how they read? In Bible times, people normally read out loud. When they read the Bible, they would also be hearing the Word of God.
Should I keep going to a church where my pastor got a divorce and then re-married one year after?
From the information you give me in that question, it’s impossible to answer. There are pastors who are divorced but have committed no sin on their part. I know of some pastors in that exact situation, where their wife went off the rails, and there was nothing in their conduct as a husband which caused it, or in any significant way contributed to that. We often jump to the conclusion that if any man is divorced, it must be his fault. Often, that may be the case; it certainly can’t be ignored as a possibility. It has to be looked at very carefully.
Now, the other thing you mentioned your question: the pastor got a divorce and then remarried one year after. Again, that’s something of concern. But we would want to know more about the circumstances before passing a categorical judgment that it was wrong. From the information that you give me, I cannot tell you right away that your pastor was wrong for doing that, or that he was in sin, or that you should no longer attend the church. That may very well be the case, but a lot more would have to be known.
Number one: was the pastor at sin in the divorce? And if so, has he really repented of that sin and been restored in light of that sin? Number two, was there anything ungodly or improper about his new marriage? Was there anything inappropriate about him meeting his new wife, or the time before his marriage to her? Many people automatically think, “Well, he’s divorced. Well, they got married a year later, so there must be something inappropriate.” Well, perhaps there is. I don’t want to automatically say that there wasn’t. But neither do we want to automatically say that there was.
That’s simply the council that I would give you. That pastor needs to be truly accountable to some brothers around him, whom he respects and will answer to, who can give him counsel and guidance in this. If a pastor has sinned, he should not be in charge of his own restoration. There should be other godly, wise people, to whom he can submit and yield. He should refuse to take charge over his own restoration to ministry. That’s the general principle that I would communicate.
Can Christians get tattoos? What does the Bible say about them?
Let me answer this question in a bit of a contradictory way. Number one: The Bible does not say anything about tattoos as they are commonly practiced among people today. Number two: The Bible does mention tattoos in the book of Leviticus. I speak about this issue in my commentary on Leviticus, which you can find at enduringword.com or at Blue Letter Bible.
I don’t believe that the tattooing spoken of in the book of Leviticus and prohibited by the law of Moses, is the same practice as what is commonly practiced today. The tattooing that was condemned in the Old Testament was done as part of pagan rituals honoring the dead and was meant to appease the pagan gods relating to the dead. Regarding those pagan burial and funeral customs, God said no; His people should not imitate them. I believe it’s very rare today for people to get tattoos for the same reason. Therefore, I would say that as tattooing is commonly practiced today, I don’t believe the Bible speaks to it, though it does speak to tattooing in the context of ancient, pagan, Canaanite customs having to do with rituals for the dead.
Now, should a Christian get a tattoo? Can a Christian get a tattoo? I believe that is between each person and the Holy Spirit. I don’t mind telling you a personal example. We told our three children, “You can’t get a tattoo as long as you’re living in our home. Once you move out and get on your own, then if you would like to get a tattoo, that’s between you and God. But in our home, no, you’re not going to get one.” We felt that was an appropriate way to communicate our conviction of conscience our children. Since then, our children have gone on and gotten tattoos to some extent or another, and it doesn’t bother us at all. That’s between them and the Lord. Again, look up my commentary, specifically in the book of Leviticus, for more reading about this topic.
Is okay to baptize our church neighbors if that neighbor doesn’t want to be a part of our congregation?
The Bible would allow a person to be baptized outside of a congregational connection, but it’s not ideal. Think of the Ethiopian eunuch when he was on his way back to Ethiopia from Jerusalem. Philip the evangelist said, Hey, let’s baptize you. He was not baptizing him in connection with a congregation. However, we must say that the Bible indicates to us that one of the important aspects or meanings of baptism is that it does connect us to God’s family. Ideally, that’s together in a local congregation. Ideally, every believer is connected to a local congregation. I know you can be a Christian and not be connected to a local congregation. But I hope we would all agree that that’s not ideal. As a believer, it is ideal to be connected to a real group of believers, to be part of the church family. It could be more formally organized or less formally organized. The point is that we are not just baptized as individuals, we are baptized as individuals into the body of Christ.
That is not the only significance of baptism, but it certainly is part of baptism’s significance. I would want to know, with your neighbors, is there a reason why they aren’t or can’t be connected to a church family? Strictly speaking, I think this is permitted, but it’s not ideal. Ideally, people are baptized in a place where there is a real connection to a church family. I would have to know a lot more about the specific circumstances to really know what’s best for these individuals regarding not just the event of their baptism, but their ongoing discipleship. Really, that’s why we’re baptized as disciples of Jesus Christ. We’re not just concerned with the act of putting somebody underwater, although that’s important. We’re also concerned with the ongoing work of discipleship in their life. As I said before, ideally, that discipleship takes place in connection with the work of a local church body, whether it be formally organized, or sometimes perhaps informally.
Why did God randomly wrestle Jacob, how did Jacob win that wrestle, and how did Jacob know it was God?
This story is found in Genesis 32. First of all, God did not randomly wrestle Jacob. We read in the text that God initiated the wrestling with Jacob. There is a sense in which, spiritually speaking, God had been wrestling Jacob his entire life. Jacob’s life speaks to us very profoundly of a man who is a believer yet is not really submitted or surrendered to God. In that state of really not being submitted or surrendered to God, he was always wrestling with God. Well, there came a day when Jacob was on his way to return back to the Promised Land, the land which God had promised by covenant to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and his descendants.
As he was coming back into the Promised Land, before he was going to have this critical meeting with his disaffected brother, Esau, Jacob was no doubt filled with fear and anticipation about what was going to happen. And it says that a man wrestled with him. God initiated the wrestling. Why? Because He needed to take Jacob down. It’s as if God said to Jacob, “You’ve been resisting Me spiritually all your life. Now, let’s get together physically, one-on-one, and let’s see how you can resist Me now. Jacob offered up, in that wrestling match, the best resistance he possibly could. I would say that Jacob did win. But he only won by losing. By the end of the wrestling match, Jacob is hanging on for dear life, and he won’t let go of this one who is wrestling with him. He said, “I won’t let go of You until you bless me.”
Jacob really came to the end of himself. God disabled him, knocking his hip out of joint, which by the way, must be an incredibly painful injury. Once Jacob came to the end of himself and was completely dependent upon the blessing of God, then he won. He won by losing to God. Friend, I’ll give you that piece of encouragement today. When you struggle against God, the only way you can win is by losing. The only way you can win is by surrendering to Him. And that’s what happened with Jacob. God initiated the wrestling, Jacob won because he got the blessing he wanted, but he only won by losing, by surrendering himself to God.
How did Jacob know it was God? We are not told that specifically in the text. We’re told that he named the place Penuel, because he knew that he had seen the face of God and lived. We find out that it was not a mere man wrestling with Jacob in Genesis 32. Rather, it was God appearing to Jacob in a human form. We often refer to pre-incarnate appearances of Jesus Christ as a Christophany or Theophany. It’s a physical appearance of God. In the Old Testament, there are several occasions along those lines, which are actually appearances of Jesus Christ before His incarnation. That’s who wrestled with Jacob. We’re not told specifically how he knew it was God, but he knew that it was, and he named the place in commemoration with that.
How do we know that Paul was given authority by God to write Scripture?
Let me give a few ways that we know. Number one: Jesus promised that His apostles would be given authority to speak as authoritative rabbis for the New Covenant community, the church that Jesus Christ would establish. I believe that Jesus gave that authority, or at least predicted that He would give that authority to the disciples, the apostles. In the Gospels, Jesus said that He would give them the authority to bind and loose. The concepts of binding and loosing were rabbinic language in that day. They had to do with having the authority to determine God’s law and to explain God’s law to the people. Jesus specifically gave that authority to the apostles, and not only to the apostles, but to those who God would declare to be as apostles.
Paul was definitely an apostle, though he himself admits he was an apostle called out of due time, in other words, later than all the rest of them. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why Paul seems so energetic in his apostolic work. He felt like he had to make up for lost time.
Here’s another way. I could refer you to the passages where Paul very consciously says that what he’s communicating is from God, from the Lord. But anybody could claim what they said was from against the Lord. So, I will refer you to what Peter said about Paul’s writings. Peter categorized Paul’s writings as being of the rest of the Scriptures. Peter said, “Listen, our brother Paul writes some things that are hard to understand.” By the way, it’s kind of encouraging that sometimes Peter had trouble understanding some of the things that Paul wrote. Peter said, “Even though some of the things Paul writes are hard to understand, nevertheless, people take those out of context just like they do with the rest of the Scriptures.” Peter clearly categorized the writings of Paul with the rest of the Scriptures.
Finally, we have the testimony of the church observing that God has declared that these writings are inspired by God. So, we have the prediction of Jesus, the testimony of other apostles such as Peter, and we have the approval of the early Christians saying that Paul’s writings are Scripture.
We’ve talked about the formation of the canon of Scripture, the books that were recognized by the church as being scriptural now, I should say that this was a recognition by the church. It was not a creation; they did not create the canon of the New Testament, but they recognized God’s inspiration by the Holy Spirit upon them. Those are the ways I would say specifically that we know Paul was given authority by God to write scripture: Jesus predicted it, Peter recognized it, and the Church approved of it.
Are we committing adultery in marrying a divorcee?
I have an extensive video on this subject in my YouTube library. Check out the link in the description of this video if you want more information than the following.
Let me answer the question very straightforwardly. If their divorce was not given with biblical permission, then I believe you are. If a divorce falls under biblical permission, either for sexual immorality, most pointedly adultery, or for the sake of the abandonment by an unbelieving spouse, then God recognizes that divorce, and that person is free to remarry. The person who would marry that remarried person would not be guilty of adultery, because the previous marriage covenant was severed, and they are free to remarry.
If a divorce is not made on biblical grounds, then I believe that the marriage covenant still is in effect, and that God does not recognize the divorce. I think the important question to ask is not whether the State recognizes the divorce, but whether God recognizes the divorce. As with things in the Christian life, we have people who err greatly on either side. You have some people basically say, no divorce ever; remarriage is never allowed. I think those people are incorrect. I believe that people are wrong to say a divorcee can never biblically remarry. But it’s also wrong to say that anything qualifies a divorce and gives a person permission to remarry. I think that’s also wrong. God gives us principles about marriage, divorce, and remarriage. We have to apply those principles biblically and just apply them out as they should be applied.
Do we pray once for something or do we continue to pray until we receive what we ask for?
I don’t believe there’s any one answer to that question. I believe that there are times when the Holy Spirit would tell us to pray for something once, and that’s it. But I believe that for the most part, God would have us pray for things in an ongoing and continuing way.
There are people who say that to pray for something more than once is a demonstration of unbelief. That does not have to be the case at all, though conceivably, it could be. I suppose that I could pray for something once, and then I could come back to God and basically pray like this: “Oh, Lord, I don’t think You heard my prayer at all. I don’t think You’re a loving God. I think I really have to twist Your arm on this. So, I’m going to ask You again.” That kind of praying again for something is a prayer of unbelief.
God encourages us to be persistent in prayer, and to pray for things again and again. This is a common theme of prayer throughout the Bible. We see that Jesus prayed more than once. In the Garden of Gethsemane, He prayed three times, “Father, let this cup pass from Me; yet not My will, but Your will be done.” We also know that Paul prayed for something on more than one occasion. He prayed at least three times regarding the thorn in his flesh. The idea of praying more than once doesn’t have to be a demonstration of unbelief, but it certainly could be.
What’s the solution? Pray persistently. But don’t pray unbelievingly, persistently. When you persevere in prayer, don’t pray as if God didn’t, or couldn’t, or wouldn’t, hear you the first time. No, instead, continue in prayer, with passionate concern for God’s glory.
I say that recognizing this. There may come a time in a believer’s life when God speaks to them, not audibly but by giving an assurance by the Holy Spirit, that they don’t need to pray for a specific thing any longer. If God would give a believer such a direction or assurance in the Spirit, who can argue with that? I don’t think there’s an absolute “yes or no” answer to your question. But I do think there is a general yes or no answer the question.